Calendered vinyl films are considered
to be an economical and optimum alternative to cast when an individual wishes to opt for vehicle wrapping on a short term. But the trade-off is that calendered vinyl is not durable in comparison to cast film. There would not be a noticeable difference in the start, but gradually, the film tends to shrink with time, which makes it inefficient if a person is looking for long term vehicle wrapping.
advantageous aspect of cast vinyl film is that super-thin, making it impossible to differentiate from paint, all thanks to the 2 mm thickness. Hence, they are comfortable, durable and prove to be better performers in the long run. Also, cast vinyl films come with a prolonged warranty period. However, the warranty period varies across different manufacturers. Due to this, users who do not wish to keep any film for long, stick by calendered vinyl films as they are affordable and the users do not expect it to stay for long either.
Also, one more advantage of cast vinyl film is that it does not shrink easily and is useful in extreme weather conditions. As calendered vinyl films tend to shrink, more powerful adhesives are made use of to ensure that the film sticks to its place. Cast films can be applied by making use of user-friendly adhesives as it does not shrink and thus, the surface of the film would not be under stress, thereby enhancing the durability of the film which would require the usage of cleaner removal only when necessary.
The durability of vinyl can be
increased by using an over-laminate along with it. It also increases the life of the vinyl. However, it must be ensured that the right type of over-laminate should be used depending on the vinyl that would be used. It might have an adverse impact if one tries to use a calendered over-laminate on top of a cast vinyl. There are chances that even the cast vinyl comes off along with the calendered over-laminate. Hence, adequate care must be taken while making use of over-laminates.
Generally, cast vinyl films are
preferred as they are easy to apply even in complex areas of an automobile where application of films are generally difficult. It is preferred in compact cars, SUVs and also Hummers as they can be applied with a fine detail of application. Due to the lack of expertise, many companies do not prefer to use cast vinyl films.
Although the right procedures and
practices are followed during the application of vinyl films, there is much discomfort even if they are experienced. Here are five useful tips to follow to ensure that the wrap applied is perfect and would result in a high level of customer satisfaction.
1. The area where the vinyl is to be
applied, also known as the “live” area, should be cleaned and ensured that there are no small particles on the surface. This can be done efficiently by washing the vehicle a day before and applying isopropyl rubbing alcohol using which the residual particles can be scrubbed away. After this, by making use of Xylene, the rocker panels and fender wells should be wiped off as this cleaning agent would eliminate the residual tar and the residues that have arisen from exhaust. Post this, a prep solvent is to be used so that oils, wax, grease and silicone particles that exist on the surface are removed. Finally, the area where the film is to be applied has to be wiped again using Isopropyl rubbing alcohol due to which the film would stick firmly to the surface.
2. Also, it is a good idea to make
use of tape primer in the areas which would be prone to high levels of stress. This has to be applied five minutes before the film would be applied and it provides additional adhesion, due to which the vinyl would stick firmly to the surface even when the stress is high. It must be noted that the vinyl has to be applied within 45 minutes of applying the primer and hence, it is suitable to make use of primer only in instances wherein you can assure that the film would be installed within the given time-frame. Primers are mainly used in regions of the door handles, convex/concave areas and the edges where ending panels are located.
3. The films should be used along
with their best-suited over-laminates. To elaborate more, it is best advised to use the over-laminate from the same manufacturer whose film would be used. If there are any issues that arise with the graphics, manufacturers will take care of it usually, at least till a certain span of time. However, it is mandatory that all the required procedures are carried out during the installation of the film.
4. Usually, the best practices
involve making use of minimal breaks in the graphic panels, which is wrapping a vehicle with the least possible breaks. However, there are some breaks which cannot be avoided at all, such as the gap between the doors. If not, breaks must be used only if it can be hidden by making use of new graphic panels. Also, in the process of minimizing the breaks, adequate care must be taken to ensure that the film would be free from stress, especially near the door edges and body panel seems.
5. The vinyl should be laid down
completely and heated after application. Due to the heat provided, the vinyl film firmly binds to the surface and the graphics would perfectly stay in place wherever it was intended for, be it a flat surface or a concave/convex area. Heating also ensures that the vinyl gets adjusted to the underlying surface and does not get back into its original shape.